Minneapolis Business Leaders See Increasing Profits And Hiring By End Of Year: KPMG Survey

Concerns Continue With Respect To Governance and Risk

Jul 19, 2012, 12:17 ET from KPMG LLP

MINNEAPOLIS, July 19, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Minneapolis business leaders are more optimistic and see increased profits and hiring than a year ago, according to a survey by the Audit Committee Institute (ACI) of KPMG LLP, the audit, tax and advisory firm.

In fact, 76 percent of Minneapolis-area business leaders feel that profits will increase in 2012, up from 67 percent a year ago.  And 48 percent plan to increase headcount, up from 35 percent a year ago. The survey was taken during a recent roundtable meeting hosted by ACI and attended by more than 53 board members and business leaders from Minneapolis-area companies.

"Although business leaders continue to voice concerns about economic uncertainty, they are moving their businesses forward in this 'new normal,' post-recession environment and are voicing more confidence as a result," said KPMG Minneapolis Managing Partner George Kehl. 

Kehl believes that companies must continue to raise the bar on operational efficiencies and risk management to remain competitive. "Companies are responding quickly with new approaches to acquiring and maintaining customer relationships and they're embracing digital media and cloud-based technologies," he said.  

Governance and Risk

A key ACI conference topic that continues to weigh heavily on the minds of business leaders is risk management, specifically around information technology and cyber security. In fact, when asked how satisfied they are that management has an effective process that aligns key governance activities with risk "hot spots," and links these activities with strategy, execution, and contingency plans, 54 percent said they were only somewhat satisfied and 18 percent said they weren't satisfied at all. Just 28 percent said they were satisfied.

"Business leaders need to simultaneously focus on ensuring their organizations have an effective process in place that aligns their strategy and governance activities with key operational, compliance and business risks," said KPMG's Kehl. "Those companies that get it right will differentiate themselves from their competitors in meaningful, game changing way."

When business leaders were asked how satisfied they are that their company's governance activities are integrated into strategy and add "real value" beyond compliance, 23 percent indicated that they were satisfied.  Yet, 49 percent said they were somewhat satisfied and 28 percent said they weren't satisfied.


KPMG LLP, the audit, tax and advisory firm (www.kpmg.com/us), is the U.S. member firm of KPMG International Cooperative ("KPMG International.") KPMG International's member firms have 145,000 people, including more than 8,000 partners, in 152 countries.


Megan Dubrowski